The industry is a buzz! Word is circulating not only in the streets but in the offices as well—hip hop music’s DEF JAM is closing their doors—FOR GOOD!
While DEF JAM has yet to comment on the alleged transaction, details surrounding the deal have begun circulating online. Rumors of the demise of Island DEF JAM Music Group have been greatly exaggerated, claims the label’s former CEO, LA Reid.
Reid, who stepped down as Chairman and CEO of the label in March to join the U.S. version of the British singing competition “The X Factor,” alongside its creator and former American Idol judge, Simon Cowell, told Human Nature that the recent restructuring at DEF JAM does not mean the end of Hip-Hop’s first OFFICIAL label!
Reid resigned from the DEF JAM in March, setting off a series of moves that has included the planned sharing of such back-office functions as legal, finance and digital operations between Universal Motown Republic Group and Island DEF JAM Music Group, and the naming of Bruno Mars’ manager, Brandon Creed, as an A&R consultant, and Chicago producer No I.D., of Common and Kanye West fame, as Executive Vice President of DEF JAM.
DEF JAM also laid off approximately 20 staff members as it reshuffled its ranks, garnering concern from fans and industry officials about the direction off the label. However, Reid says he’s confident that label will survive.
“The staff that I had at DEF JAM are really amazing people,” he said. “I’m saying that selfishly because it’s a staff that I put together and I believe they are well equipped to handle any work that is put before them.”
Reid is also set to take on the chairman title at the soon-to-be restructured Epic Label, according to reports.
“Why would it [DEF JAM] go under?” says Reid, who recently attended Russell Simmons’ 12th Annual Art for Life benefit in the Hamptons. “It’s a legacy. It’s going to be around forever.”
Well, Mr. Reid— the legacy might be around…but the actual LABEL…is DEF-initely not JAM-MIN’!
Ka’Ja Johnson is a journalist from New York City! While working closely and consistently with COMCAST Media, BET-J, MTV2, JUMPOFF.TV, C.I.N. and now HIPHOPWORLD.com, Ka’Ja has been able to pioneer, hands-on experience with education—making her an ultimate hustler. A woman on the grind, Ka’Ja has interviewed celebrities: singers, athletes, actors, models fashion designers etc.
“I definitely think that Journalists and bloggers alike should have a responsibility to report with integrity! No lies, no hype, just the facts—and the story should pretty much write itself!”
When asked, who her favorite Hip-Hop artists the game right now? Ka’Ja looks like a kid in a candy store, “Tinie Tempah, Tyga, Jay-Z, Swizz BeatZ’, Jadakiss—and YES I STILL LOVE TUPAC! Also too, I’d wish Eve would come out with a new album but I do like some of Nicki Minaj’s stuff!!